Experiencing something for the first time can be exhilarating, exhausting, and engaging. Looking forward to that experience can create feelings like anxiousness, happiness, and anxiety. It’s even more exaggerated when the experience is something you wished for but thought would never happen.

My recent trip to Australia falls into that last category. My wish: to go to Australia and photograph with Leanne Cole in Melbourne. You see, when she was in the U.S. in 2015, I had the great opportunity to take her to Santa Cruz and go down to Monterey for a day. She was visiting a friend in Saratoga. We both remember that day. I was amazed at how at ease she was with her camera. And the thought of visiting with her in Australia was a dream come true.

This exciting trip was with my friends Sandy and Peg who are sisters. They invited me along as their adopted sister. Peg was detained a day so Sandy and I flew the long trip together.

I had a day alone with Leanne, walking Melbourne, when Sandy went to pick up Peg at the airport. We had breakfast, lunch and met Sandy and Peg for dinner. What a wonderful day that was. Melbourne is an exciting city with amazing architecture and the Yarra river running through it. Here is a sample of images from that day.

The next morning Leanne picked us up and took us to Port Campbell where we spent 2 full days photographing iconic scenes—places I have seen in Leanne’s blog many times.

On the way to Port Campbell

Leanne had arranged a wonderful rental house for us at Port Campbell where we enjoyed our 2-night stay. We explored the beaches and sights.

On our way back to Melbourne, Leanne took us to a rainforest, Maist’s Rest.

I had never been in a rainforest before, and this was outstanding. The ferns (which I love) were huge. Here’s a peak.

We had a wonderful time and experienced new things. This was the highlight of my almost 1-month vacation. Thank you, Leanne, for driving and being our very own tour guide. I totally enjoyed our girl friend time and the fun with all four of us. We all appreciated your time. And I’ll admit that Australia has great coffee!

There will be future posts on my blog about this trip. From Melbourne we journeyed to Sydney and then cruised for 11 days. Maybe I can fit some into an LAPC post.

But today, your challenge is to show and tell us about a new experience you had. It could be a trip, the birth of a child or grandchild, a road trip to a new place, the possibilities are endless. As you respond, please link to this post and use the Lens-Artists tag.

We all enjoyed your responses to Sofia’s challenge of Spring. Your narratives and images were imaginative and beautiful. Some of you even got in the Spring mood while walking in snow! Next week, April 1, Donna Holland will be challenging you and she’s not fooling around! Be sure to look for her post.

If you would like to participate weekly in our Lens-Artists Challenge, click here for more info. 


  1. I liked the architecture there a lot, Anne. Especially the Webb Bridge. Also liked Mother Nature’s architecture on the Loch Ard Gorge. Loved the green in the rain forest scenes.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Anne, your post thrills me. I met Leanne for lunch in San Jose when she came. Then I spent a week in Melbourne with her and another blogging friend, Carol, and another friend of hers. It changed my life forever. Your pictures are fabulous. The rainforest pictures are my favorite. I didn’t see that area. We went to the Healesville Sanctuary. We spent some time in Docklands as well. I love the Webb Bridge! Fabulous journey. I’m so glad you got to go!


    1. Thanks Marsha! You must have met with Leanne around the same time I did when she was in San Jose. And, I’m glad you met with her in Melbourne too. We did get to the Docklands on our own, but I’m not sure I can pick them out from my pictures. We missed the Healesville Sanctuary. Maybe you’ll put it in a post someday and tag me so I can see it. I also love the Webb Bridge.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My post will come out tomorrow with a picture of the Webb bridge. I took tons of them. I’ve got a series of posts on Australia. Some I’ve taken down because of broken links and such. I met Leanne shortly after she got off the plane, and I think you must have been the person she had come to see. I happened to be in the area for a meeting, so we made arrangements to meet. It was such an honor.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Anne. I’m here at last to join the challenge. You’ve picked a great theme. How wonderful to join Leanne in Melbourne! I loved your photos which brought back memories of our trip there. Melbourne is a great city. We hope to go back there at the end of this year. Here’s my post about a recent new experience:

    Lens-Artists #242: New Experiences


  4. I have always loved Leanne’s photography. It must have been fun to have her show you around. You did a wonderful job photographing the iconic places you visited with her.


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